HAMILTON – Nettleton has been highly touted for its powerful lineup and near flawless defensive play, and it was precisely those two factors that carried the undefeated Lady Tigers to a 14-4 victory over Hamilton on Tuesday.
Junior first baseman Michele Hester sparked the Nettleton bats with a towering shot to left to kick start a six-run sixth inning that saw the Lady Tigers (8-0) rip Hamilton (5-3) for seven of their 19 hits on the night.
“We came out a little slow with the sticks and kind of woke up later in the game to take advantage of a few of their miscues and you’ve got to against a good team like Hamilton,” said Nettleton head coach Dana Rhea.
“You’ve got to give them credit they hit the ball and we knew they were going to hit the ball,” said Hamilton skipper Lewis Earnest.
KB Leach had an impressive night going 4-for-4 with a double and three singles, while MaKenzie Hawkins added three hits to lead the Lady Tigers’ offensive attack.
Hamilton committed four crucial errors midway through the contest that opened the door for Nettleton to build on their lead in the final three innings of play.
“We knew that we were going to have to play good defense and that’s something we didn’t do,” Earnest said.
The Lady Tigers left eight runners on the bases, with four in scoring position.
“We didn’t hit the ball very well,” Earnest said. “We had some opportunities to score a few runs before it got out of hand, but they made the plays.”
Caitlyn Atkins went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs, while Hannah Howell and Chauncia Willis added a pair of hits on the night for Hamilton.
Adam Gore/Special to the Journal